Wednesday, September 22, 2010

No make-up week (day) experiment

Rachel, my editor over at The Chi Guide and authoress of the inspiring blog Rabbit Write is ensconced in an experiment.

A no-make-up experiment.

Back Story
All week I've been wondering what kind of contribution I wanted to make to the no-make-up experiment cause. Then Rachel's post got put up on Jezebel and I was shocked at the negative feedback I was reading. Aren't my fellow feminists the main readers of Jezebel? So why, when it came to make-up were they all you-can-take-my-freedom-but-you-can't-take-my-MAC-lip-gloss?

Make-up and Dating
What about make-up and dating? You can argue who the audience of your make-up is, but if you are a single woman who might want to get married sometime in her lifetime I think we have to admit that our make-up is partly intended for possibly paramours or at the very least making ourselves feel great which in turn makes possible paramours notice us.

These days I almost never go out at night without make-up, but I also almost never put make-up on for weekend errand running.

Some might think you can't get dates if you aren't depicting your most fabulous (made up) self, but that's just not true. It might even be true that my future significant other will be interested in me regardless of if I applied a facade or not (shown by the fact that in college I mainly got numbers while in sweatpants, and make-up doesn't go with sweatpants).

Although, that could be inconclusive data as I was in sweatpants for 90% of college. Regardless, I find that if you truly connect with a person, whether or not you wore designer favorite eye liner is superfluous (regardless of what Cosmo tells us).

Case Studies
One weekend, I was going to visit a new boyfriend and I forgot all of my makeup. At first I was petrified. I started asking insecure questions as I was without my security make-up blanket.

And then I told myself to get-it-together. Why would I date someone who only likes the me in make-up? I wouldn't. And even if I did, would I date them forever with a mask of powders, blushes and liner on? No (and the weekend was fine).

The opposite is also true, however.

I recently dated someone who thought I should never wear make-up. That wearing make-up marred my beauty.

At first, you might say awww, he liked you and thought you were beautiful without make-up. But what does that insinuate? That I should feel lucky I found someone who can stand to look at me when my adornments are gone (hold on to him, you don't have to wear your make-up to bed!).

At the end of the day, what I do with my face/body/hair/nails is my business. My relationship with make-up is mine and isn't to be dictated by someone I like to kiss (unless my lip gloss is too sticky...such a deal breaker).

Make-up probably hasn't gotten me any dates, but it has kicked some unworthy prospects to the curb. So here's to you make-up, it might be just me and you at the end of the night.

Today for Rachel I went sans make-up to work which naturally occurs about once a week. I like to play with make-up, but I like sleep more.

The photography requirement of the experiment isn't a call for compliments.

Instead, I ask: why does a make-up free face seem to beg for validation that it is still pretty?

"I don't make an effort to be sloppy. I just don't consider a perfect hairdo and a perfect face to be beautiful."
Juliette Lewis


  1. I think one of the misperceptions out there is that a woman who "doesn't wear make-up" also doesn't care at all what she looks like. Images of uni-brows, unkempt hair, acne and moustaches come into play.

    This obviously isn't the case for all women.

    I don't wear much make-up either but I'm totally going to participate in this little experiment! Next week I'll go all week and blog about it.

  2. This was one of my favorite posts from all of the blogs that did a no make-up week. That question about us still seeking validation, and the photos STILL being about beauty is the one that I keep going back to.

  3. makeup is fake-up, you look great without it